New plan for Crown at Middleton
CHRIS BISHOP A village pub beside the A47 has been rescued by a new owner who plans to bring a little of the north Norfolk coast inland.
A village pub beside the A47 has been rescued by a new owner who plans to bring a little of the north Norfolk coast inland.
Steve Hutton wants to turn The Crown Inn, at Middleton, into a food-led gastro pub, modelled on those which have turned the coast road into an eating-out trail.
Surveying the boarded up shell of the once popular pub yesterday, he said: “We're going to serve seasonal, local produce with what I guess you'd call modern English cuisine.
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“Everything will be cooked fresh on the premises and we'll have local real ales and probably 40 or 50 wines.
“People say they have to go up to the north Norfolk coast to find anything like that at the moment. We're four miles out of King's Lynn, bang on the A47.”
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Mr Hutton said the pub would include a brasserie and more formal dining area, with decking outside.
While he hopes the work will be completed by early in the New Year, English Heritage must first approve plans to renovate the carr stone pub, parts of which are believed to date back to around 1744.
Mr Hutton, who paid £305,000 at auction for The Crown, plans to spend almost as much renovating the building. Its once busy bar and lounge have been almost totally stripped of fittings, while many of its boarded-up windows need replacing.
By the time it is ready to re-open, The Crown may well have become a household name. Researchers from a new TV series which follows the fortunes of people who buy properties at auction were present when Mr Hutton made his winning bid and have visited The Crown to film.
Mr Hutton said he hoped to recruit kitchen, waiting and bar staff from Middleton and the surrounding villages. Anyone interested in working at the pub should call 07730 697682.